Wedding Recap: First Look

Adam and I chose to have a “first look” prior to me walking down the aisle and I’m so glad we decided to do this! After exchanging our gifts and putting the final touches together before our wedding party pictures, our photographer whisked us off to the garden of the church between the education building and the sanctuary for our only chance to be alone on our wedding day.

Adam stood with his back to me and between the coordinator and photographer we had a timed photo opportunity, followed by several moments of alone time to soak up all that was about to happen without interruption. It was perfect.

Seeing him for the first time, EVER, in a tux was great in and of itself, but knowing that in just a couple of hours he would be my husband made seeing him at this moment even more special. I was overwhelmed with joy.

I was full of love.

I wanted to know if he was nervous.

He wasn’t.

And just as soon as we were left alone, we were swept back into reality for wedding party pictures…

images via Karen Segrave | KES Weddings

Wedding Recap: Getting Ready

While home for Christmas, Adam and I received our gorgeous wedding album and disk of images from our photographer, Karen Segrave of KES Weddings. Ever since then I’ve been itching to share the story of our wedding day with you. From getting ready, to the “I Dos”, to the par-tay following the ceremony and everything in between, I’ve decided to break our day up into a series of blog posts.

Let’s begin, shall we?

On the morning of our wedding, my bridesmaids and I gathered at a local salon in my small hometown to have our hair and makeup done. My sister served as photographer at the salon – which would explain why there are no pictures of my maid of honor getting ready.

First up was Sydney, a hometown friend I’ve known for my entire life – and hers.

Sydney

Then my hilarious sorority sister, Sarah got her pouf on.

Sarah

Following Sarah was another sorority sister and sweet friend, Lauren – whose hair had never held a pouf until my wedding day.

Lauren

My bridesmaids were awesome that morning. We laughed, we played Tribond, we chatted about life and we enjoyed the Southern small town requisite lunch of Sonic. Well, I should say they enjoyed Sonic, I was given strict instructions by my wedding coordinator, Heather, not to eat anything greasy so I had apple slices and caramel sauce while the smell from everyone else’s greasy goodies filled the air.

Leading up to my wedding I had no idea what I’d be like on my wedding day. Would I be nervous? Manic? Stressed? I actually ended up having a tremendous feeling of peace all morning and in the minutes leading up to the wedding. And, in addition to peace? Complete and utter happiness. I’m still shocked my cheeks weren’t sore the next day, because I’m pretty sure I had a smile all. day. long.

No Makeup

Ignore the lack of makeup…I know I’m scary

Around mid afternoon, our photographer arrived at the church to begin capturing our day. I had taken my dress, veil, and other belongings over to the church earlier that morning so that all I’d have to worry about once my hair and makeup were done was getting dressed at the church.

Photography by KES Weddings

After getting to the Bridal Suite at the church and getting everything in place it was time. Time to put on my dress.

For my wedding.

On my wedding day.

I was so excited for this moment.

After putting it partly on in the bathroom, my mom helped to button me in. I still remember the rush of excitement that swept through me at this moment.

Laughing

After putting my dress on, I was able to relax for a bit. Adam and I had decided to exchange gifts first thing after we had gotten ready, so my sister took Adam his gift while Adam’s brother and best man, Sam, was in charge of delivering my gift.

Once our gifts were exchanged, it was time for our “first look”…

images via Karen Segrave | KES Weddings

Honey, I’m home…

With moving and marriage also came a bit of a change to my work environment. I switched from corporate cube monkey to secluded homebased associate. I’m not complaining, I got to keep my job and I can work in my PJs whenever I want. 🙂

Here’s the thing, though, I’m not exactly the homebody type. I like to be social during work. I like knowing there’s someone I can yell pointless facts to over the cube wall. At home, that person for the better part of 8 hours everyday doesn’t exist. Unless you count the voices in my head.

Friday, in an effort to entertain myself and have a productive lunch break from work, I unpacked boxes. Progress feels good. Really good. Plus, I needed to know what we don’t have – decor wise – so that we could have a successful flea market/vintage shopping trip last weekend.

Then, as I was walking back to my desk to respond to emails and get back in the work groove I had an idea:

That’s right. A floor to ceiling “wall” of boxes built by me to greet Adam when he arrives home from work. I placed it strategically in the front door so he can open the door without actually knocking down the boxes.

I’m a genius.

And the funniest person I know.

Transitioned and Thankful

It’s been a month since I got married. A single, whirlwind month full of traveling, packing, Hog calling, unwrapping, unpacking, organizing, working, and more unpacking.

Needless to say, I’ve neglected my blog, but I’m in a groove now – or so I think – and blogging will return to normal soon.

In the meantime, my favorite holiday is upon us and the practice of giving thanks is something that also seems to be neglected in my day to day life. But, you see, I am thankful – I’m thankful for a lot of things.

I’m thankful that my husband supports and encourages me. That he tells me he loves me frequently.

I’m thankful for my health.

I’m thankful that I have a roof over my head, food in my kitchen and lots of warm scarves in my closet.

I’m thankful that everyday I can smile at a perfect stranger and get a smile in return.

I’m thankful that even in a new city, which I was hesitant to move to because it was smack-dab in the middle of Longhorn country, I already feel at home.

I’m thankful for my family, for the laughs we share and the memories we continue to make every time we’re together.

I’m thankful for my friends and their loyalty, even if I am almost a Texan now.

I’m thankful that the first place I learned to drive by myself to in Austin was Nordstrom Rack.

I’m thankful that I haven’t gotten lost yet – especially since I hear everyone gets lost when they first move here.

I’m thankful for an almost unpacked apartment and look forward to decorating it with flea market finds.

I’m thankful for inspiration found on Pinterest.

I’m thankful for the window next to my desk. It’s amazing what blue skies and sunlight do for my mood.

Most of all, I’m just thankful, for everything in my life.

I couldn’t imagine a life any better than what I have right now.

Halloween Honeymoon Horror

Yep, I’m officially a married woman – the wedding and honeymoon were absolutely perfect, and I plan to share a series of posts about them in the near future. Literally, I’ll be writing a series of posts, because I never want to forget certain moments or details from my wedding weekend.

Adam and I returned from a picture perfect honeymoon exploring Napa Valley, CA to a weekend of packing up my apartment in preparation for my move to Austin, TX.

Yeah, you read right – I’m becoming a Texan and moving to Longhorn Country. Last I checked, the world is still spinning.

Sunday, Adam headed back to Texas to clean and make room for my stuff to be moved in this weekend. When he arrived back at his apartment he called and told me that he was “perplexed” because his kitchen was in disarray. His blinds had been ripped to shreds, his desk area was disheveled and there were black spots everywhere.

Growing up in an old house, my immediate thought is a bird somehow got in while he was gone for the wedding and honeymoon. He’ll just need to find it and throw it away. Unfortunately, according to his stellar shit observation skills, he determines these droppings are not the kind most commonly associated with birds.

Ok, then. What is the culprit?

A mouse. He tells me he has had a mouse destroy his kitchen.

I’m immediately all, “I’m not moving to TEXAS to work FROM HOME with MICE!!!!” Seriously, little mice co-workers running beneath my feet throughout the day? No thank you. The move to Texas? Is off. For reals.

He tries to console me in a somewhat stressed voice, “Don’t worry my sweets, I’m headed to Wal-Mart to buy extermination supplies and will have this solved before moving you in Saturday. I promise, there will not be mice in my apartment by the time you arrive.”

Adam goes to Wal-Mart to buy supplies in Texas while I’m back on my couch in Arkansas procrastinating packing, reading blog posts about unwelcome guests and putting myself in her shoes. It’s not a good image in my head – I can assure you of that.

He calls when he gets back home to tell me he’s identified the “Bait”. His cycling energy bars that were left unopened on the kitchen counter. This is good, right? Never leave energy bars on the countertop. Lesson learned. Now let’s trap this mouse. Pronto!

He hangs up and spends the next 30 minutes cleaning and disposing of all food and other ruined items in his kitchen and desk area. Then calls with an update.

“Megan. It’s not a mouse.”

“It’s not?”

“No. I’m a little freaked right now”

“Why?”

“There’s a squirrel in one of the wedding gift bags.”

My first response is “WHAT?! Which bag? Are the gifts* okay?”

My second response is “YAY!!! NO MICE!!!”

My third response is “Is it dead?”

Adam responds, “I’m not sure. I’m gonna kick the bag.”

I wait…

“Ok, the squirrel didn’t move but I’m still afraid I might get attacked by it. What else should I do?”

This is when I suggest he take a broom and push the bag across the floor. He does so, deems the squirrel “dead as a doornail”, uses a garbage bag to pick the squirrel up and places it on his balcony as evidence for the apartment manager Monday.

Here’s the crazy part: No one has entered Adam’s apartment in 10 days. All of the doors and windows were shut and locked and the dryer vent appears to be properly connected.

In other words, there is no sign of forced squirrel entry.

But hey, at least I’ll have a really clean new kitchen to use once I get moved to Austin.

*No wedding gifts were harmed in this story

Tailgate [Dis]Agreement

Full disclosure? It’s rare that Adam and I don’t see eye to eye about something, I guess we’re lucky in that regard. But this week? Notsomuch.

You see, we are huge Razorback fans and  have a shared dream of a tailgating vehicle. Originally our dream was to find an old University of Arkansas Transit bus or school bus, but given the difficult game parking scenarios on campus – not to mention the gas bill – we have decided to forgo that option. For now.

Since this realization, we have been brainstorming other ideas. First, I thought we could convert an old VW Bus. I had the whole plan in my head, it was going to be amazing. That is, until Adam’s brother reminded us that they are rear engine and crushed my dreams.

Then, I had the idea to save up and buy one of those pimped out Ultimate Tailgater trailers. I mean, have you seen these things?

They smoke your BBQ. While. You. Drive. For serious. And they come with 3 TVs, surround sound, refrigerator/freezer, taps for beer and soft drinks, and much more. It’s PERFECT. However, the price tag deters us. As do the university tailgating restrictions for our parking lot. But it’s ok, there are other options, right?

According to Adam, YES!

We could buy an ambulance and convert it to the “Razorback Fanbulance”. In theory it’s perfect. You can buy used ambulances for next to nothing on eBay – I’m talking $255 and they already have a/c power adapters so we can sink the majority of the budget into tech-ing it out (him) and making it super cute (me). There’s only one problem with this vehicle: most likely someone DIED there.

Adam isn’t convinced though, as he responded, “They probably would appreciate you partying in the ambulance. Joy out of heartache.”

Responses like this will become my forever in one month.

Or, we could buy a 15 passenger van and take out the bench seating. Build a party deck on top and attach a grill to the back end. Put a little seating inside and install  TVs on either side. He was so excited about the party deck that I called him a frat boy and he immediately began to pop his collar.

Someone please help. I need ideas. Ones that don’t involve death or wannabe frat boy dreams…

And if we choose yours? You’ll get invited to the first official tailgate in our dream tailgating machine.

Until this gets resolved we’ll be picking up pizza and tailgating from a Coleman folding picnic table – like amateurs. Woo Pig Sooie!

Thank You

Dear Faithful Blog Readers,

[all 3 of you]

In the spirit of Thanksgiving – thanks!

Thanks for falling for my shameless self-promotion via Twitter and Facebook. Thanks for reading my senseless southern ramblings. Thanks for commenting on, sharing, and retweeting posts you enjoyed.

Thanks for allowing me to be myself through my writing.

I can only hope that my blog provides you with a glimmer into my life as a mid-20s, born and bred, Razorback-obsessed, Southern gal, while educating you on the art of cheese dip, bringing a smile to your face, and, above all, giving you a laugh when you need it most.

Thanks for your loyalty. Because of you, in just 11 short months, my lil’ old blog has had 2,213 hits.

I guess you really do like me!

 

 

 

Give Thanks!

Turkey-induced comas.

Seconds [and thirds] of a bubbling hashbrown casserole.

Buttery rolls.

Pumpkin Pie.

Pecan Pie.

Apple Pie.

Thanksgiving is upon us and I can’t be happier. Surprising as it may sound, it’s not the food that I look forward to most about Thanksgiving, it’s the time spent with family and friends. The time after the paper plates are put in the trashcan (Don’t judge, we have about half as many dishes to wash compared to you because of this), when everyone is recovering from a meal filled with boisterous laughter and staring in silence at a table covered in shellacked decorative vegetables.

It’s this time when everyone is quiet and together that I value the most. Even though our quiet time together may not last long and there’s still games to be played, it’s at this moment every year when I realize just how lucky I am. I have a family who loves and supports me and friends who laugh with [and at] me. I have a belly full of good home cooking and a smile on my face. I wish we could all be so lucky.

There’s a tradition in my family every Thanksgiving, and I’m sure it’s common among other families, where we go around the table and say what we are thankful for. What great perspective it gives us every year, to remove ourselves from the hustle and bustle of our busy lives and just give thanks. It’s magical.

One year [though no one else in my family remembers this, so who knows if it actually happened or if I had a random dream that I confused with reality] someone went above and beyond the typical “I’m thankful for_____” after dinner spiel.

We received a thank you card in the mail. This wasn’t just your run of the mill “Thank you for ____ gift/gesture” card; it was a card thanking us for everything we had done in the last year that had impacted this person. From a smile or hug to a gift and everything in between. Everything they could think of to give thanks that year involving us was meticulously written in the card. I don’t even remember if they sent this card at Thanksgiving or some other time during the year, but it left a lasting impression on a middle school-aged me.

Imagine what the world would be like if we all had time to send a “Thank You” card to our nearest and dearest thanking them for everything they did for us in the last year.

True Life: Procrastinating Grad Student

I came across a post I wrote several years ago for a short-lived collaborative blog with some friends. I’m now in my fourth semester of grad school (I took a break after my first semester to figure out what degree I really wanted) and while now it’s more DVR and needlework distractions than construction projects, apparently I’ll never learn NOT to procrastinate…

{Comments in brackets are my additional thoughts, 3 years later}

As most of you know, I began graduate school this semester and I’ve noticed some things about me and school have not changed. I still thoroughly enjoy procrastinating and the [seemingly] free time it affords me. Here’s a glimpse into one such night:

Monday night, 6pm: Opening the door to my apartment trying to remember what TV shows premiere that night. Oh yes, Chuck…AND The Bachelor…AND Dancing With the Stars. Awesome! I can get my reading done for class tomorrow during the commercial breaks and still enjoy the shows.

{I have no idea how I managed without a DVR back then. PS: I only watched Dancing With The Stars that season because I had recently purchased the show’s first workout DVD and was a bit smitten with Maks}

8pm: Chuck ends, first episode was really good…I might have to add this to my weekly lineup.

{Chuck didn’t stay in my lineup for long}

[hand drops highlighter, picks up remote, and clicks over to ABC for the end of Dancing With the Stars] Since I haven’t fully entered the 21st century yet I have to watch the shows live, gasp, I have no DVR. So sue me. I pick up my computer off my coffee cubes [not to be confused with coffee table] and begin to surf the internet. I needed a study break anyway.

{Still have the coffee cubes, still use the computer, now a MacBook, while I’m watching TV}

8:15 pm: What was it that I told Mom I needed this weekend? Oh yes, that’s right a black bookshelf, preferably one of those nifty little leaning ladder ones, to put in my bedroom. [fingers type walmart.com in FireFox] YES!!!! Wal-Mart has one for $39.99, perfect!!!! [fingers type bank’s URL to check balance] YES!!!!! I have money, I can go buy the bookshelf. [Body proceeds to get up off the couch and walk toward the door, purse and keys in hand]

{Now, it’s been 2 years, at least, since I’ve shopped in a Wal-Mart}

8:25 pm: I pull into Wal-Mart’s parking lot and head towards the furniture, pushing my buggy as I go. Dang! That bookshelf isn’t at this Wal-Mart. Determined to find something I like I press on.

8:40 pm: Find another bookshelf on sale for $20. [SALE = music to my ears] I embark on hoisting the 75 lb box into my cart by myself. Phew. Now I just have to get it into my car.

8:50 pm: Pull into my Apartment Complex and begin to pull 75 lb box towards my apartment door.

8:51 pm: [after getting 3 feet closer to my apt from my car] pant, pant, pant. Why did I think this was a good idea?

8:55 pm: Sigh. How in the Samhill am I gonna get this 75 lb box upstairs to my apartment by myself?

8:57 pm: Nice neighbor boy sees me struggling from his balcony and offers to help. Thank you Lord.

9:00 pm: Bookshelf is finally in my apartment. Construction commences!

9:20 pm: I’ve unloaded all pieces on top of my bed and begin to hammer and screw away until this monstrosity is complete.

9:25 pm: Why?!!?!?!!??!?!?!!?

9:40 pm: Bottom half is completed. Top half is gonna be a booger.

9:50 pm: Why?!!?!?!!??!?!?!!?

10:25 pm: Top half is attached to bottom half and now I have to turn the bookshelf over and attach the back.

10:27 pm: The pieces aren’t even…they don’t match up…argh. Maybe if I flip them around a bit…no…ARGH!!!!!!

{This reminds me of a similar construction project I embarked on with my friend Mandy. It involved a coffee table from IKEA and, 3 months later, it still has no drawers}

10:30 pm: Why do I have to put the back pieces on crooked? I hope this doesn’t look tacky when I’m done.

10:40 pm: 40 long minutes, a crooked back, and a small section of damaged drywall later the bookshelf is in place!

10:45 pm: Is this bookshelf crooked?!?!? DANG! I’m not taking it apart, it’s gonna have to do.

11:00 pm: OH CRAP!!!!! I had 50 pages left to read for class tomorrow….

{Back then, I actually had classes in a classroom. Now, thanks to the wonders of technology, I take all my classes online. It’s a sweet deal}

Tuesday Morning, 12:05 AM: Screw this [no pun intended], I’ve got to get up for work in 6 hours, I’m so done with reading. [arm reaches to turn off light] I’m sound asleep in 10 minutes.

So I ask you, why did I think that at 8:30 buying and constructing a bookshelf sounded like a good idea?

Oh, yeah! Because it was better than reading my graduate school articles.

Why I love to hate the Longhorns

[or: Why you should never skimp on a statue budget]

Saturday night my dear friend Sarah IM’d me about a certain sports discussion board thread had gained her attention for over an hour.

Over an hour? Really?

I needed such a distraction because Adam had just left on a Transatlantic flight to Ireland and my thoughts have been known to go to the worst possible scenario when I have nothing else to think about. Plus there was this thing called grad school that I’ve been known to procrastinate. So with just over an hour until the Razorbacks schooled the Gamecocks, I clicked. And oh how happy I was that I did, because you just can’t make this crap up.

First, Sarah directed me to this: New Longhorns Legend Walk

Basically, directly behind University of Texas Co-Op a Legends Walk of the most legendary Longhorn athletes has been constructed.

Sounds grand enough, right?

Upon closer inspection you’ll notice that (based on the sport)  every. single. statue. is exactly the same, except for skin color. Same facial features even. And if you’re a basketball legend you’re lucky enough to look somewhat like Michael Jordan, and, in some cases, a white Michael Jordan. Or, if you’re lucky enough you might even get a wig! I mean, how awesome is THAT?

The discussion board thread that stole her attention for over an hour can be found here: UT Football, Basketball, Baseball & Golf statues behind Co-op

As you scroll through the 20 some odd pages you’ll see that people started creating Photoshop mashups of the statues in various scenarios, which got our wheels turning. Sarah and I started thinking of movie scenes, posters and pictures to put the statues in. I’d surprise her with a few ideas of my own and email my photoshopped masterpiece to her or she’d send me a picture link and I’d get to work on it, since she didn’t have Photoshop.

We continued this exercise all through the second half of the Razorback game and came up with what we thought were genius ideas. So genius in fact, that we found a similar thread on WooPig.net to post our creations on.

It’s possible that you don’t visit WooPig.net, or are too lazy to click through and find these lovely masterpieces. I totally understand, because who has time to find and read random sports discussion boards? Apparently Sarah and I do.

These Photoshop masterpieces deserve to be shared with the Interwebs.

At least in our opinion they do.

Before I share these, I need to say thanks to the UT Co-Op:

Thanks for funding the most hideous statues in the history of sports statues. This Hog fan sure loves an excuse to laugh at your expense. And yes, I’m fully aware the SWC no longer exists, but my parents raised me right.

OMG that there twister's gonna git me!!!

 

Run Away!

 

Why so serious?

 

Save me! Nutt's a'gonna git me.

Happy Halloween

Confession: I’m not really a big Halloween fan. Mainly because I absolutely despise scary movies. Take for example the fact that Scream and Scary Movie (the movie that parodies scary movies) scare me. The whole obsession with horrifying ghouls and goblins and paranormal activity and haunted houses is lost on me. So yeah, I’m a wuss.

Since I am a past costume winner at the First United Methodist Church in my hometown [I dressed as a rockstar, complete with metallic Tina Turner-esque hair], I do enjoy the idea of dressing up as someone else. I just prefer that costumes involve cheerleaders, raggedy Anns, clowns, and ballerina princesses – not blood, ghosts, guts, or masks.

I like the Halloween innocence of bobbing for apples and participating in cake walks. I also enjoy pranks, as long as they aren’t played on me or, if they are played on me, don’t prey on my phobia of snakes or give me nightmares.

When you’re raised in a large 100-year old Victorian home it just seems to make Halloween easier to celebrate. The large front porch, the windows that sometimes rattled in the wind, occasional creaks when a door was opened…I’m sure it’s a Halloween enthusiast’s dream. I remember years of my dad putting on scary masks [somehow, when he put them on it wasn’t much different than his normal appearance. I kid. I kid.] and handing out treats while my mom had a spooky Halloween cassette tape playing for added effect. Later, they got even more into it, with jack-o-lanterns on the steps and spider webs stretched over the door frame. But, I think my favorite Halloween memory is the year my dad rigged up a ghost, which my mom had made from a white sheet and newspaper, with fishing line to mysteriously raise up in front of trick-or-treaters when my masked 6’8″ dad opened the spider webbed door.

That year? One kid was so scared he bolted off the front porch, through the yard, and back to his parents’ car. Without getting any candy.

County Fairs

I don’t know what it is about fairs, but their sketchy amusements excite me. Last fall, I had the opportunity to accompany a friend and her daughter to our local fair. I was very excited about going, 1) Tilt-A-Whirl! and 2) Funnel Cake, but little did I know what I was getting myself into.

Growing up, my county fairs rarely had any rides. Instead, it was strictly an “old timers” fair with homemade game booths and agriculture competitions. I haven’t been to a “real” fair with rides in probably 10 years and everything I thought I loved about fairs wasn’t quite as I remember…

The Tilt-A-Whirl that I was able to ride 5+ times in a row as a kid? I barely made it through one ride as an adult.

The funnel cake I could practically taste on my lips just by smelling it? I ate maybe half of it before it got to be too sweet for me.

The things I enjoyed, that I didn’t think I would?

Carnival games, I was the Skee Ball champion of our little group.

I also developed a new found appreciation for my parents [all parents, really] who take their children to the fair year after year. Who knew you could blow 40 bucks in the blink of an eye on ride tickets, only use up said tickets in 10 minutes on 4 rides. Seriously, those amusement companies have to be making some serious bank.